Natural Hair Chronicles: Summer Edition

At the end of December of 2014, I did my big chop after letting my hair transition for a year. For the past six months, I have come to learn a lot about my hair. Like, for instance, when my hair decides not to cooperate (which is quite a lot :p), it’s not the end of the world. These past six months have been challenge for me, but I’ve picked up a few tips along the way that I find particularly helpful for this time of the year.

1) Don’t Be Afraid To Try Out New Products. That’s not to say to go above and beyond your means, but feel free to try new things. With the extra time to spare, your hair definitely could use a few spa days along with you. I recently went to Whole Foods and spent $40 on virgin olive and coconut oil, flax seeds, and jojoba oil. I also went to Walgreen’s and got a few things from the Shea Moisture line. Your hair is like a person. People need to eat certain things for them to grow and be healthy. Nobody is going to the same exact things as another person. Your hair is the same way. Be willing to take some time and figure out what works for your hair specifically.

2) Hair bonnets and Wraps are a MUST! I was very naive when I was younger and assumed that my hair only needed to be wrapped when my hair was straightened or in some intricate hairstyle. Soo not true. When I first went completely natural, I found myself waking up to my hair a tangled and dry mess, even if I had moisturized and detangled it the night before. Your hair needs to be protected while you sleep. All the time you move around, your hair takes a hit. it also leaves you more susceptible for tangles and single-strand knots. Hair bonnets and wraps not only protect your hair, they help lock moisture in. And, if that doesn’t seal the deal, you can find them just about everywhere for cheap!

3) Stop Focusing on Your Length. At the beginning of 2014, I would always stress about my hair being too short. I had gone from almost waist length to a small bob at most, and I was definitely missing it. As a college student, stressing out about little things like this is the easiest way to drive yourself to insanity. Focus on the health of your hair. I would much rather have healthy short hair that can bounce back and withstand multiple stylings rather than dead, dull, long hair. Enjoy the journey. Your decision to go natural means a commitment, and true dedication. Your hair grows at a fixed rate. Of course there are ways to help it grow a little faster, but after that there is nothing you can do short of doing a dance to the heavens.

4) Put Your Hair In a Low Maintenance Hairstyle. Whatever style you find that works for your hair, run with it. That’s just a normal summer tip. When I was younger, my mother would put mine and my sisters’ hair into a cornrow-ed style (I hate cornrows now) and she would leave it in for the summer. Your hair grows a lot better and has a lot less breakage when you aren’t constantly touching it. It gives your hair a chance to breathe and run it’s natural growing phase. I currently have my hair in mini twists that I take down and re do every couple of weeks when it gets frizzy.

Those are some tips that have been doing a lot for me this summer. What helps your hair? Leave me a comment and let me know. Thanks for reading!

-JW

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